Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Twenty ADAPT activists arrested demanding access to elected officials.

ADAPT draws clear distinction in candidates

By Tim Wheat

Joey Tate is arrested in Little Rock

The Little Rock police seemed to change tactics today in an attempt to prevent ADAPT from arriving and interacting with elected officials. The prior restraint method however was unsuccessful as ADAPT was welcomed at the office of Mike Ross and made similar demands at the campaign office of Asa Hutchinson.

While the Mike Ross welcomed ADAPT activists and made a statement of support; more than fifteen activists were arrested outside the campaign office of Asa Hutchinson. Although the doors to Hutchinson’s headquarters were locked, the office is on the second floor and inaccessible.  Little Rock police were not able to restrain ADAPT activists from reaching the office and individuals removed paper hiding the sign to the Hutchinson campaign headquarters and delivered demands to the candidate.

“We believe that voters should know whether the Gubernatorial candidates will support the right of seniors and people with disabilities to live in the community,” said Brenda Stinebuck, an organizer for Arkansas ADAPT. “Or will continue state policies which force them into unwanted institutions and throw away our precious tax dollars.”

Josue Rodriguez of Memphis is arrested
About fifteen ADAPT activists were arrested when they failed to move from the entrance of the inaccessible building. Four ADAPT activists were arrested in the street on West Capitol Avenue on their way to candidate Mike Ross's office. ADAPT was prevented from marching in the streets, a public easement, and requested to use the sidewalks that are often inaccessible and impassible to people who use wheelchairs.

“This only illustrates ADAPT’s message here in Arkansas,” said Bruce Darling who was arrested today in the street headed to Mike Ross’ office. “Left out of the decision-making process, people with disabilities find doors slammed in our faces.”

Following the dual action at the Arkansas candidates for governor offices, ADAPT visited the current Arkansas Senator John Boozman’s office to ask him to support the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. The Senator was not in, but his staff met outside with ADAPT and said they would relay the message to the Sen. Boozman.
ADAPT marches in the streets of Little Rock